This is the OPPO F5, the latest selfie-centric smartphone by the Chinese company. The last time the company launched a selfie smartphone was two years ago (2016), we all know that the company has been focusing on rear camera photography in 2017. So, what makes the company returns to Malaysian market with a selfie phone, after being quiet for such a long time? Let’s dive right into the full review!
The F5 comes in a pretty familiar box, and everything in the box is pretty similar to other OPPO phones:
- OPPO F5 with pre-applied screen protector
- TPU case
- SIM ejector tool
- Wall adapter
- MicroUSB cable
- User guide and warranty
That Trendy Design
Smartphones nowadays all follow the same trend when it comes to design, and it’s no exception for the F5. The front of the phone is all about the 18:9 screen with a front camera, earpiece, and light sensor on top. Honestly, the bezel isn’t as thin as of how the product photo shows, there’s an additional black bezel too.
In terms of display quality, color tends to be oversaturated. Other than that, its 6-inch Full HD+ (2,160 x 1,080) display is clear and sharp. One more complaint, for some reasons I always feel that the screen isn’t as responsive as other phones I’ve used, I even pilled off the screen protector to see whether is there an improvement in terms of responsiveness, but nothing really changes. With that, it’s down to either the performance or the software of the device.
Thanks to the curved back, the device is quite comfortable to hold on hand. There’s a 0.4mm antenna line on top and below, which looks even cleaner than the R9s. Additionally, the fingerprint sensor is now located on the back of the phone as the front is fully “occupied” by the screen. The rest of the design placements are basically same as other OPPO phones.
Not a Fan of Its Performance
Powering the phone is a MediaTek MT6763T octa-core processor with 4GB RAM and 32GB expandable storage. I’m not really a fan of MediaTek processor because it always seems to be underpowered, or let’s just say it’s not as powerful as its rivals. During my review period, I tested Asphalt 8 using this phone and the result was rather disappointing as the phone can’t run the game smoothly. Don’t get me wrong, the phone is good enough for day-to-day usage such as checking Facebook, browsing the web, and taking photos. I think OPPO should have launched a Qualcomm version instead of a 6GB RAM version.
Besides fingerprint sensor, you can also unlock the phone using the face unlock. It’s not something new since Google already introduced this feature when Android 4.0 was released. Setting up the face unlock took me quite a long time as the phone kept failing to register my face. However, once it’s done, the face unlock feature works pretty fast. Duly note that the face unlock won’t work under the low-light condition as it uses the front camera to recognize your face. Even though it works pretty fast, but I wouldn’t recommend you to use this feature as it is not safe. The phone can be unlocked even without looking at the screen, it happened to me sometimes when I didn’t even notice it. After all, it’s not Samsung’s iris scanner or Apple’s Face ID.
The OPPO F5 runs on ColorOS 3.2 based on Android 7.1 Nougat. Well, the software experience is pretty much the same as before, with some added features. It also means that the software is like iOS, only it’s running on Android.
O-Share is a wireless file transferring feature that works between OPPO devices only. According to OPPO, it is 100x faster than Bluetooth.
As the software is based on Android 7.1 Nougat, it’s not surprising to see the split-screen feature, which allows you to do two things at once.
Furthermore, ColorOS 3.2 now also comes with Game Acceleration feature, which optimizes certain games for a better performance as well as blocking all the notifications while gaming. The Clone Apps feature allows you to have two WhatsApp accounts and two LINE accounts on a phone.
20MP A.I. Beauty Selfie Camera
And here comes the main selling point of the phone — the 20MP A.I. beauty selfie camera. According to OPPO, the front camera has a facial feature optimization technology, which accentuates your facial landmarks and contours to enhance the symmetry between features like your eyes, nose, cheekbones, and jawline to create the perfectly refined and natural selfie. You can also turn on the bokeh effect to blur out the background, something like what portrait mode normally did.
The selfie with bokeh effect is kind of hit or miss, it depends on the lighting condition. Overall, it did well but some parts of the hair will be blurred out as well.
Let’s not forget the phone actually has a 16MP f/1.8 rear camera, which is capable of taking nice and detailed photos, even under the low-light condition. Furthermore, the phone also comes with a manual mode, though the maximum shutter speed is only 16 seconds, capturing stars with this phone is not possible.
Decent Battery Life
Juicing up the F5 is a 3,200mAh battery, which should be able to last through a day easily with a single charge. Sadly, the phone comes with a regular 5V/2A charger, which means there’s no fast charging or VOOC Flash Charge for OPPO.
Retailing at RM1,298, the OPPO F5 is available in black and gold. If you wish to purchase the red version, it’s only available for the 6GB RAM version, you can even get the Swarovski phone case here, but it’ll cost you more at RM1,698.
The OPPO F5 did a great job in the camera department, it takes great selfies and even offers the manual mode for the rear camera, bringing phone photography to the next level. In case you didn’t know, OPPO called themselves as a camera phone company. Indeed, the company had a breakthrough in terms of smartphone photography, but when it comes to other factors, the company needs improvements.
- Great cameras
- Decent battery life
- Unimpressive performance
- Software needs improvements